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08-13-2008

Author Stewart O’Nan to Deliver Convocation Lecture at Clarkson University

[A photograph for media use is available at http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/onan.jpg .]

Author Stewart O’Nan will deliver the Van Sickle Endowed Lecture at Clarkson University’s convocation Monday, August 25, at 7 p.m. in Cheel Arena. The event is open to the public, free of charge.

During the summer, Clarkson freshmen read Last Night At The Lobster, a novel by O’Nan, a Connecticut author who has written a number of books, one of which, Snow Angels, was made into a film. O’Nan, once a test engineer with Grumman Aerospace, has written fiction and non-fiction, including a book on the Boston Red Sox, co-authored with Stephen King. Onan author

Last Night At The Lobster deals with the ordered closing of a Red Lobster restaurant in Connecticut, four days before Christmas, and the dilemma of its manager who finds staff unwilling to come to work, a snowstorm swirling outside and diners looking for a meal.

Stewart O’Nan was born and raised in Pittsburgh, and in college studied aerospace engineering. He worked for Grumman on Long Island for several years but eventually, as he got more and more interested in writing (and less and less interested in the aviation industry) he returned to school for an M.F.A. at Cornell.

His story collection In The Walled City was awarded the esteemed 1993 Drue Heinz Literature Prize for Short Fiction. Snow Angels won the 1993 Pirates Alley William Faulkner Prize for the Novel. He has also written notable nonfiction, specifically The Circus Fire, his account of a tragic 1944 fire in Hartford, Connecticut. He has taught at Cornell, the University of Central Oklahoma, and Trinity College.

The Kenneth J. and Irla Van Sickle Endowed Lectureship was established in 1992 through generous bequests from the estates of Kenneth and Irla Van Sickle of Shortsville, N.Y. The Van Sickles shared interests in photography, gardening, nature and stamp collecting. During their long and active lives, the Van Sickles were dedicated to hard work, placing great value on education, particularly higher education.

Clarkson University launches leaders into the global economy. One in six alumni already leads as a CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. Located just outside the Adirondack Park in Potsdam, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university for undergraduates with select graduate programs in signature areas of academic excellence directed toward the world’s pressing issues. Through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and health sciences, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo, and connect discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Michael P. Griffin, director of News & Digital Content Services, at 315-268-6716 or mgriffin@clarkson.edu.]

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